Ashleigh Barty, Simona Halep advance in Adelaide
World No. 1 Ashleigh Barty survived a scare yesterday before battling through her opening match at the Adelaide International to beat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in three sets.
The top seed, who had a bye in the first round at Memorial Drive, faced a struggle to get past her experienced Russian opponent 4-6, 6-3, 7-5 and book a place in the quarter-finals.
The Australian was joined in the last eight by second seed Simona Halep, who is back with coach Darren Cahill.
The Romanian made her 2020 competitive debut with a 6-4, 7-5 win over Ajla Tomljanovic.
Former US Open champion Sloane Stephens didn't fare as well, crashing 6-2, 6-2 to 201st-ranked Australian qualifier Arina Rodionova. The American exited in 72 minutes, dropping serve four times.
Elsewhere, Maria Sakkari of Greece made quick work of Vitalia Diatchenko of Russia 7-5, 6-2.
Last year's French Open finalist, Czech Marketa Vondrousova, played her first match since picking up an arm injury at last year's Wimbledon, defeating Tatjana Maria in Adelaide 6-3, 6-0. - AFP